I Have a Gripe

November 17, 2010

The TSA and Privacy

Filed under: Security,Terrorism,United States government — alvb1227 @ 12:42 pm
Tags: ,

OK, I have an announcement. My husband and I actually disagree with each over the recent uproar with the TSA, enhanced pat-down techniques and touching someone’s “junk.” Shocking, I know.

Where We Agree…

We both agree that our government has been in reactive mode since 9-11 instead of proactive mode. Richard Reid tries to light his shoes on fire, so now we take off our shoes. There was a possible attack with liquids, so now we can’t take large bottles on board. By the time we have a procedure or technology to catch the last attempt, they have moved on to the next idea; such as toner cartridges. This is not what we should be doing. We realize this is not a conventional war and these people are just plain crazy.

We both also agree that the Center for American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the same group that is responsible for the Ground Zero Mosque, is really pushing their luck. They are asking for a search waiver for Muslim women due to religious beliefs. Whether anyone wants to admit it out loud or not, it is Muslim lunatics that killed 3,000 people on 9-11 and are repeatedly trying to blow us up. If they know women will not be screened, what is to stop a man to dress as a woman in a burka, or use a woman as a suicide bomber? If the TSA, Janet Napolitano and the President agree to this, then they are dumber than I ever thought.

Where We Disagree…

My husband believes that we should do whatever we are asked, whether it is a pat-down or a full-body screening process. Since these individuals are constantly changing the game, this is the only way currently to protect Americans and the flying population as a whole. If you don’t want to go through these procedures, then you shouldn’t fly. Period.

I believe we should take a page from El Al and partner with them to learn their techniques and implement as many of them as possible. El Al does not use these type of techniques and has a superb history of keeping their passengers safe. We just have to be willing to admit we don’t know everything, listen to their suggestions and ask for help where needed. This includes that all-terrible word – profiling.

As I mentioned in my piece on 9-11, I have only been on a plane once since then and before I flew, I wrote a will and needed Xanax from my doctor. My husband and I have great plans to hopefully travel in the future to places like Alaska, England and Rome. That means going on a plane. However, I still don’t feel safe and do not want to subject myself to someone seeing me essentially naked or having such an invasive pat-down that I should get a date out of the deal. I don’t claim to have all the answers, but I don’t think we are asking all the right questions.


  1. Andrea, we are not always in sync politically, but I agree with you on this one. We, as a whole (Americans, our government, etc) are reactive and almost always cater to the lowest common denominator. Air travel has gotten ridiculous in all ways, the TSA screenings being the latest hassle on top of the heap. If I need or want to travel in the US I will plan on driving, even if were to the west coast. The airport hassle is no longer worth it. We do have a trip to England planned for next summer, so I will be flying. I’ll opt for the scan because I don’t want strangers touching me. And though I can’t believe I’m saying this, I do think this is an area where profiling is valid.

    Comment by Martha C. Hall — November 17, 2010 @ 1:15 pm | Reply

  2. So, the WiFi on planes, the fact that airlines won’t serve peanuts on planes if any passagers is allergic to them, and the free Starbucks because of a delayed plane; have all been overshadowed by the fact that TSA agents have violated my privacy. Quick synopsis: I am in an obvious hurry to get to my gate and all getting from TSA copy one, copy two. First I pass a somewhat business dressed man who with no coat and forgets to takes his belt off before going into the metal detector makes me think that he wasn’t much of a business man. I shook my head at the guy and proceed to the next agent. They laugh “oh we have a fast one huh” and send me through to the human x ray machine. Copy one, copy two. I then get sent to the frisking area, where I got felt up, and felt up, and felt up, and got the best disclaimer I have ever heard. I then get asked to provide a swab of my fingers, where once I took my attention from my bag the opportunity was used to open every pocket I had. So it was maybe my fault for trying to fly through the security point, for providing my military ID, for the fact that I jumped when the guy squeesed my ass, maybe I was talking to much. Having heard so much about the topic prior to the event, I was interested on what the whole fuss was about. So, was all that worth national security, absolutely. Maybe a better selection tactics, the business guy got off with just a wave of a wand. Privileges to active duty, would be nice. And just maybe the choice of whether a woman could have searched me. LOL

    Comment by Julian Monroy — November 20, 2010 @ 8:50 pm | Reply

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